VAMHN'S ECR BURSARY WINNER BETHAN PELL DISCUSSES HER Creative Methods in Qualitative Research TRAINING course
Have a read below to see what our ECR bursary winner Bethan Pell did with her award money. To find out how you can apply to our ECR Bursary Scheme click here.
My background as a former Independent Domestic Violence Advocate gave a realistic insight into the impact of domestic violence and abuse on children and young people, igniting a desire to contribute to relevant, impactful research in this area. While developing my doctoral proposal, I recognised the value of creative and visual methodologies as an alternative way for children and young people to articulate, express and represent experiences and feelings. I wanted to learn more about how I could use these methods in my proposed research with potentially vulnerable, child participants.
I was therefore delighted to be awarded VAMHN Early Career Researcher Bursary and used it to attend the Social Research Association’s ‘Creative Methods in Qualitative Research’ Online Training Course. The course involved two interactive half day workshops, which took place online over zoom. It covered a range of topics including: the theoretical underpinnings of creativity in qualitative research; practical and ethical considerations when using creative and visual methods; creativity throughout the lifecycle of research and the role of the researcher within this.
The course was extremely valuable in developing my knowledge, experience and skills in several ways. Most importantly, I developed my understanding of existing theoretical frameworks and paradigms in creative and visual research methods, improving my ability to apply theory-practice links when selecting, using and analysing these. The workshop activities provided opportunities to experiment directly, helping me to gain a critical understanding of the practical and ethical considerations involved during implementation. They also highlighted the participant experience and enhanced my appreciation of creating representations and embodying their experience through visual metaphors.
I was surprised by the possibilities of using creative and visual methodologies in all aspects of the research process, from conception to dissemination. The course really tried to encourage us to push the boundaries and get creative and I have developed practical ideas in relation to this, which I am excited to try out! I loved interacting and engaging with other like-minded researchers – sharing our ideas and insight throughout the course to consolidate learning. Furthermore, online delivery of the course revealed how some of the methods could be adapted remotely, a particularly welcome bonus when considering the current climate!
I am extremely grateful to VAMHN for the opportunity to attend this course, where I have strengthened my knowledge, understanding and experience of using visual and creative methodologies. I hope to use this learning to strengthen my intended doctoral study research proposal.